With every line item on budgets being closely evaluated, team building may seem like a lavish expense that companies can do without. However, dysfunctional teams should also be recognized as a cost of business that companies need to remove from their accrued daily costs. When changes and restructuring occur, especially in unstable times, companies cannot afford to forget about the teams that will forge ahead despite the numerous challenges before them.
During any economic downturn, getting things done and attaining results is of the utmost importance. Business success that goes above and beyond expectations is seldom accomplished by one person. Teams are forged for the specific purpose of achieving goals that are bigger than any individual could take on alone. However, the strain caused by these difficult economic conditions may hinder progress and make it difficult for teams to function efficiently. Cuts in budget and employment may require people to work together in ways they haven’t before, and the formation of new teams is a prominent reality. Fear is an influential factor that drives employees to focus their attention on protecting their individual job security, rather than working to benefit the team, the company or its customers. Left unattended, these conditions can create non-productive, inefficient teams.
Creating cohesive, productive teams takes more than contrived team building activities – it requires strong leaders within the company who can motivate the individual employees to create an effective team. The foundation of such a team is a clear vision that unites the group. Establishing trust, accountability and open communication empower each person to contribute their best to the team’s cumulative efforts. On any team, every person is responsible for its success. Taking time to train the individuals using team building to grow the group’s ability to work well together saves companies money over time and lays the groundwork for both short-term and long-term success.